Mice Model Market: Growing use of Rat Models and Rising Demand for Humanized Mice Models

According to the new market research report by MarketsandMarkets, the mice model market to grow from USD 1.11 billion in 2016 to USD 1.59 billion by 2021, at a CAGR of 7.5%.

Advancements in genetic techniques for the development of genetically modified rats have driven the adoption of rats as models for human diseases. The increased availability of knockout rats, mutant rats, as well as embryonic stem cell lines makes them preferred animals for studying various human diseases.Rats serve as better disease models for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, breast cancer, neurological diseases, and other diseases as compared to mice.

Mice Model Market by Type (Inbred, Knockout, Hybrid), Technology (CRISPR, Microinjection), Application (Oncology, Diabetes), Service (Breeding, Quarantine, Genetic testing) & Care Products (Bedding, Feed).

Some of the advantages offered by rat models over mice models are listed below:

  • The embryonic stem cell technology, traditionally used to generate genetically modified mice, takes about a year. In contrast, knockout rat models can be efficiently generated in about 6 months using advanced gene editing technologies. Zinc finger nucleases are injected directly into fertilized embryos, eliminating the need for ES cells and removing species limitations.
  • Mice are less robust and reliable on behavioral assays as compared to rats due to their small size.
  • Rats outperform mice on assays of learning, memory, and addiction.
  • In pain assays, rats are less susceptible to anxiety-induced analgesia and are more reliable. Hence, traditionally, rats were preferred over mice in pain-related studies.
  • The liver metabolism of rats (in terms of the number and type of liver enzymes) is more similar to humans.
  • It is easy to surgically modify rats and collect samples; hence, rats are preferred over mice for many adsorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity (ADMET) studies.

These advantages are triggering the preference for rat models over mice models among researchers. This trend is expected to gain momentum in the coming years, thus restraining the growth of the mice model market.

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Opportunity: Emergence of CRISPR as a powerful tool in the field of biomedical research

CRISPR (clustered, regularly interspaced, short palindromic repeat) is seen as a revolutionary technology for gene editing. The use of Cas9 enzyme differentiates CRISPR from other forms of genetic modification. This technology edits and rearranges genes by cutting out damaged or unwanted parts of the DNA, allowing the remaining DNA to be rearranged in a new way. Moreover, this fast, precise, and easy-to-use technology is considered as a revolutionary tool in research, and there is an intense interest to validate its therapeutic usage in humans. CRISPR was first shown to work in mouse and human cells less than three years ago and has already been applied to a range of biological systems and disease areas. CRISPR is used in the development of genetically modified mice strains, making the process not only quicker but also less expensive. Thus, the emergence of CRISPR as a popular technology is expected to offer potential growth opportunities in the coming years.

Key Players 

Charles River Laboratories International, Inc. (U.S.), The Jackson Laboratory (U.S.), Taconic Biosciences, Inc. (U.S.), TRANS GENIC Inc. (Japan), Horizon Discovery Group plc (U.S.), Envigo (U.K.), Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings (U.S.), and genOway (France).

Charles River Laboratories is a leading player in the global mice models and services market. The mice models offered by the company include inbred, outbred, hybrid, immunodeficient, congenic, and genetically engineered mice. The company also offers mice modeling services such as surgical services for rodents, genetic testing services, colony management services, and health monitoring services. The strong portfolio enables the company to increase collaboration with clients—from early lead generation to candidate selection.

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